PUTRAJAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Malaysian authorities have placed four areas in the state of Terengganu and Perak under the enhanced movement control order (MCO) from Thursday (Feb 4) to Feb 17 after they reported a surge in Covid-19 cases.
Residents in Felda Tersat and the TNB quarters construction site in Kuala Berang, Terengganu, and Felda Lasah and Kampung Besi Api in Kuala Kangsar, Perak are forbidden from exiting their homes under the enhanced MCO. Visitors are not allowed to enter these areas and all businesses will have to be shut down.
Senior Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob said in the case of Felda Tersat, health authorities had carried out 420 screenings since Feb 1, of which 45 people were confirmed positive for Covid-19.
At the TNB quarters construction site, he said to date, 386 tests had been done and 62 individuals were reported to be positive.
On the situation in Kuala Kangsar, Ismail Sabri reported that as of Jan 31, health authorities carried out 71 screenings for the coronavirus, of which 35 positive cases were recorded in the two localities there.
"The government, following the advice of the Health Ministry, has agreed to enforce an enhanced MCO in these localities for 14 days until Feb 17.
"This will allow authorities to carry out targeted screening and place measures to control infectivity and to break the chain of Covid-19 infection within the community, " he said in a statement.
On the issue of enforcement, Ismail Sabri said that authorities reported that not putting on a face mask at crowded public places topped the standard operating procedure (SOP) violations recorded across the country on Tuesday.
Of the 611 individuals arrested, 145 were caught for this offence, followed by crossing state and district borders without permission (109) and 107 for failing to practise physical distancing.
He said that aside from enforcement activities, the task force monitoring SOP compliance carried out 67,500 checks, including at restaurants (5,661), supermarkets (3,901), banks (3,689), hawkers (2,207) and factories (1,478).
He added that since July 24 last year, a total of 115,580 individuals who returned to Malaysia were quarantined at government-designated stations.